Town rakes in $1M in a day



MOUNT DESERT — Money has been pouring into the town office here at a dizzying pace.

The town took in more than $1.3 million in property tax payments in just one day last week – Monday, July 27 – and $2.6 million for the whole week, according to Tax Collector Margaret Porter.

The town’s budget for this fiscal year, approved by voters at town meeting in June, is $15.8 million. Of that, $14.4 million must be raised through property taxes. The tax rate is $7.13 per $1,000 of property valuation.

Tax bills went out July 9. Taxpayers have until Sept. 1 to pay without being charged interest.

The town has more than $2 billion in taxable private property.

It might be that several hundred property owners paid their taxes last week, or it could have been only a few dozen summer residents with multi-million-dollar estates.

For example, the 19 taxable properties on Cooksey Drive in Seal Harbor, which have a total assessed value for tax purposes of $67.4 million, account for $481,000 in tax revenue for the town. Those Cooksey Drive properties include four owned by David Rockefeller Sr. with a combined assessed value of just under $19 million and three properties owned by Robert Bass valued at nearly $17 million.

Other residential properties that account for a significant portion of the town’s tax base are the Peabody Drive estate of Mitchell Rales, with an assessed value of $15.6 million; Charles Butt’s two properties on Manchester Road in Northeast Harbor, assessed at $11.1 million; Donna Reis’ home on Indian Head Lane, assessed at $9.7 million; Skylands, the Seal Harbor estate of Martha Stewart, assessed at $9.2 million; and Steven Rales’ property on Sargeant Drive, with an assessed value of $7.5 million.

A number of other seasonal residences in Mount Desert are valued in the $5 million to $6 million range.

Dick Broom

Dick Broom

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Dick Broom covers the towns of Mount Desert and Southwest Harbor, Mount Desert Island High School and the school system board and superintendent's office. He enjoys hiking with his golden retriever and finding new places for her to swim. [email protected]
Dick Broom

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